5 Tips on Surviving a Megacity

Megacity: a very large metropolitan area. Megacity can be a challenge, but remember that over 10 million people can survive it every day so why couldn’t you? There are a bunch of Megacities in Asia: Seoul, Bangkok, Shanghai, the list goes on. This is a guide with five survival hacks to remember. 

1. Keep your head cold

Arriving at a Megacity in Asia can be a big culture shock if you have never traveled to one before. You might think “I knew there were a lot of people here, but this is 100 times more than what I imagined!”. Indeed 10 million people is a number you can not imagine. The first advice of survival in every situation is to keep your head cold. Think clearly about the options you have available in hand. Remember that in today’s world you can connect to almost anyone within seconds. Especially when you’re surrounded by people every minute whether you are in China, Indonesia, Malaysia, South-Korea, Thailand, New Zealand, Taiwan… You name it.

Shanghai Megacity
Sunrise in Shanghai! Photo was taken by Zhang Kaiyv // Unslplash

2. Getting around in A Megacity

To walk or not to walk? There’s a lot of options to think about and usually, in a metropolis, the distances are long. Should you take the bus, metro, taxi, tuk-tuk, rent a scooter or maybe a city bike? Every city has its own system in public transportation, but I would have these three things in my mind when making a decision:

  1. Price. As a student, you don’t always have a budget for taxi rides, so it is only profitable to buy a public transportation card and hop on a bus or a metro!
  2. Ecology. In this day and age, it’s important to think about ecology. Rent a bike and get some good exercise and fresh air at the same time or walk to your destination.
  3. Distance. If you have time: walk! If you don’t have time at all: take the first option in your sight or run like the wind.

The electronic-powered kick scooters are taking over the world in Asian countries as well. They are easy to use and affordable. Just remember that the kick scooters are not the most ecological option considering that they are operating only from 1 to 12 months before being unusable.

How to Ride a Scooter in Asia? 

Big city public transportation in Asia
Metro is an easy and affordable public transportation in most of the Asian Megacities. Photo was taken by José Gasparian // Unsplash

3. When you get lost

Remember the first tip to keep your head cold! Take a deep breath, locate the nearest cafe, order a nice cup of hot coffee or tea, sit down and ask for directions or the WiFi password. If the situation you’re in seems any kind of suspicious, try to act calm and look like you know what you are doing. Getting lost in an urban jungle might at it’s best to be a great adventure.

Just a reminder: most of the time people are happy to help, you just have to ask.

You might also be interested in: 5 Unique Things You Can Not Miss in Bangkok

4. Escape the madness

Getting too crowded? Time for a little getaway! A Megacity is one of the best places to call home whenever you feel like traveling around the country or planning a day trip somewhere close. They are in a convenient location no matter which city you are in and for that reason they have excellent transportation connections, making it possible to visit the many beaches, islands, jungles and mountains as well as neighboring countries in Asia. For example, Malaysia has the most beautiful islands and a jungle to visit during the weekend or a little holiday and in Bangkok, you can plan a day trip to climb up, for example, the golden mountain.

Mountain hiking in China
The perfect getaway in China! The photo was taken by Wu Jianxiong // Unsplash

5. Use common sense

Last but definitely not the least: use your common sense. First of all, do your research on the places you are going to and avoid them if people tell you to avoid them, whatever reason that may be. Be aware of your surroundings and don’t go wondering alone if it’s already dark. Let people know where you are and where you’re going to. Keep your stuff close to you and all valuables secured. Finally, I would recommend keeping a second credit card or some cash was somewhere hidden, just in case.

After all, this is all the basic stuff you have to do everywhere you go. Above all the most important thing, in the end, is to enjoy every bit of the wonderful experience you’re having!

So, if over 10 million people survive it every day, why couldn’t you? 

Woman photographing a megacity
Trust your instincts and make some great memories! Photo Taken by Wanaporn Yangsiri // Unsplash

For surviving you also need food, go read our Introduction to Korean Barbecue

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